Foundation Concepts for Chemistry and Life Sciences


Designed to introduce basic concepts in the physical and life sciences. Topics include an introduction to the study of the basic chemistry required for further studies in the physical and life sciences: including concepts of pure substances and mixtures; atoms, molecules and ions; simple atomic models; the periodic table; chemical compounds: formulae of inorganic and organic compounds and compounds of biological importance; bonding; basic shapes of molecules; states of matter; the mole concept and stoichiometry; solution studies; acids and bases; and simple chemical reactions. Utilising a range of approaches, students will develop skills in observation, research and communication modes appropriate to further study in Life Sciences, Nursing, Environmental, and the Chemical Sciences.



  • Semester 1 - 2016
  • Semester 1 - 2017


  • Semester 1 - 2016
  • Semester 1 - 2017

On-Line from Callaghan

  • Semester 1 - 2016
  • Semester 1 - 2017

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Establish an appreciation of the central role of chemistry in science and technology;

2. Demonstrate an understanding of the elements of chemical language, representations, structures and symbolism;

3. Solve simple problems in both practical and theoretical contexts;

4. Have developed competency in scientific reasoning, analysis of problems and note-taking;

5. Conduct independent research

6. Apply their knowledge and skills in an examination setting.


The course covers:

  1. matter; measurement; units and the Scientific method.
  2. atoms; simple atomic models and isotopes...
  3. the periodic table and trends.
  4. molecules; ions; chemical compounds and formulae.
  5. bonding and basic shapes of molecules
  6. physical states of matter and intermolecular forces.
  7. simple chemical reactions and chemical equations.
  8. the mole concept and stoichiometry
  9. energy
  10. solution studies
  11. acids; bases; pH and buffers
  12. introduction to organic chemistry and molecules of biological importance


To enrol in this course you must be active in the Open Foundation Program or the Yapug Program. You cannot enrol in this course if you also enrol in, or have successfully completed EPHLTH170.

Assessment Items

Quiz: Online Quizzes

Written Assignment: Research Assignment

In Term Test: Mid-Semester Test

Tutorial / Laboratory Exercises: Laboratory Report

Formal Examination: Final Examination

Contact Hours

Callaghan, Ourimbah and On-Line from Callaghan


Face to Face On Campus 2 hour(s) per Term

* Laboratory is optional for students studying the course online.


Face to Face On Campus 2 hour(s) per Week for 12 Weeks


Face to Face On Campus 1 hour(s) per Week for 11 Weeks